May 7, 2015
Hello, I'm wondering if there are any known effects on HIV from smoking vapor cigarettes? I don't drink or do drugs but used to smoke regular cigarettes. I switched to ecigs. I also have mental illness and am doing well with my HIV. Been undetectable for over 10 yrs.
Response from Dr. Fawcett
Congratulations on moving past traditional cigarettes and keeping your physical and mental health stable. It is estimated that 50-70% of people living with HIV are current cigarette smokers. We know that cigarettes are even worse for the health of someone with HIV than for others. I do not know of any studies specific to the interaction of e-cigarettes and HIV, although I have heard of people complaining of interactions (skin rashes, etc.).
Keep in mind e-cigarettes are just another delivery device for nicotine. You still remain addicted and preliminary studies indicate there are nearly as many (if not more) harmful chemicals in the inhaled vapor.
Your best bet from a health point of view is to just quit smoking/vaping altogether. There are more and more support programs, including public health departments willing to pay for patches to help people quit.
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